Dusty Hill, the bass player for ZZ Top for more than 50 years has died. He was 72.
Billy Gibbons and Frank Beard released this statement: “We are saddened by the news today that our compadre, Dusty Hill, has passed away in his sleep at home in Houston, Texas.
“We, along with legions of ZZ Top fans around the world, will miss your steadfast presence, your good nature, and enduring commitment to providing that monumental bottom to the ‘Top’. We will forever be connected to that ‘Blues Shuffle in C.’ You will be missed greatly, amigo.”
Hill had a recent health scare–a hip injury of some sort–that he’d been addressing. It’s not known if that had anything to do with his death.
A Facebook post read: “The members of ZZ Top, Billy, and Frank, would like to share that Dusty, their fearless Bass player, is on a short detour back to Texas, to address a hip issue. They await a speedy recovery and have him back pronto.
“Per Dusty’s request ‘The show must go on!.’ With that directive, ZZ Top has put the services of Mr. Elwood Francis, their trusted guitar tech of the past two decades, into play with his slide guitar, bass guitar, and harmonica playing in full swing.
“And with Elwood to our right, rest assured ZZ Top will deliver their good time, signature show”, said Billy F Gibbons. “Billy’s big guitar, crushing drums from Mr. Beard, and Elwood securing the bottom end continues the delivery with those famous three chords we all dig.”
Will the band continue? “Absolutely,” says Gibbons.
Hill was born in Dallas in 1949 and was originally a cello player. He met Frank Beard through his brother and played in a series of bands (The Warlocks, Cellar Dwellers, and American Blues) before hooking up with Billy Gibbons from the band The Moving Sidewalks in Dallas. The first ZZ Top gig with the classic lineup was on February 10, 1970.